03 September 2009

Barefoot and pregnant: be careful

I knew this would happen.

I do a lot of canning. I don't know if it saves any money when you factor in the peripheral expenses (jars, lids, garden costs, and ingredients I have to purchase), but it makes me feel like I'm helping.

Canning is hot work and all husbands like a barefoot wife in the kitchen, so I've been going about it for three summers without benefit of shoes. And it wasn't even the canning that got me in the end, but it could just as easily have been.

On the day in question I received one (1) phone call. I answered the phone and the person on the other end said, "Peanut butter rolls." Then he hung up. This was the only adult to whom I spoke that day.

Now, some people might find this insulting. Especially pregnant people who had spent the morning loading the dehydrator with a million bananas acquired free the day before and the afternoon canning jelly in a very zone 6 kitchen in August while still looking forward to making the buns for supper. But the caller had the callee's own gluttony going for him. So she counted not the heat and the fatigue and the completely unseasonable and arguably terse request, finished her jelly, and moved on to the unscheduled rolls. She even altered her course mid-prep when the Dad/Baby Caucus decided they'd rather have caramel than peanut butter.

Everything was going fine until it was time to turn the rolls out onto the plate. Then the uncoordinated barefoot pregnant lady in the kitchen spilled boiling caramel on her foot. Her bare foot.

It was sad.

What's a girl to do? Cooking barefoot just isn't safe, especially when the project involves lots of hot liquid transfers. But being barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen is a confessional statement not to be cast off in the face of mere personal injury. Fear of blistered feet didn't get anyone onto the sanctoral calendar.

Then I remembered another project I'm supposed to have in the works: Dad's boot scent pads. He told me it would be cheaper for me to make them but I see now that they are quite inexpensive, and considering how much it's going to cost to get my sewing machine fixed so I can do this project (elastic, you know), maybe we'll have another talk about it.

Anyway, it seems to me that these scent pads could easily be adapted to ensure both foot safety and essential barefootism in the kitchen. Simply slide a protective layer under the pad, adjust to a comfortable tension, and the top of your foot will be covered while the bottom remains bare as Bilbo's (and probably as crusty after a few years). Obviously asbestos is the ideal option (that's why they call it asBESTos), but with all these dang hippies taking over the government and outlawing my favorite deadly household products that actually WORK, we'll just have to improvise with what we can find around the house. Probably a disposable diaper full of cutaneously toxic chemicals would do pretty well. Sizes NB-2 should cover most sizes of feminine feet.

Mockup with immediately available materials: conventional rubber band and size 4 cutaneously toxic disposable diaper. The rubber band is too loose and the diaper is too big. Even the cat disrespects it. Please follow above directions for a more reliable model.

Girls, you know we want you barefoot, pregnant, and sweating to death in the kitchen. But please, be careful.


Gauntlets said...

LOL. Brilliant.

Now if you could find a way to keep me from burning every other part of me, I'd appreciate it.

MooreMama said...

Gauntlets - more diapers. Duct taped together.
Rebekah - I've got some 2s and some 3s. The 2s are Swaddlers, so they're nice and soft. The 3s may offer more protection. What do you think?

Rebekah said...

Gauntlets, first of all, stay away from the curling iron.

MM--I'm a bigfooted girl so I'd appreciate a 3 if you've got an extra.

Gauntlets said...


I just can't help it. My pilot light, that.

MooreMama said...

Rebekah - We actually "stocked up" at Sam's last weekend and came home to a surprise box from one of the grandma's... then I forgot that I'd asked my sister to pick up some cases of Target brand when she had a chance. So I have approximately 600 size 3 diapers in my garage. Would you like Huggies with cute little Winnie the Poohs on them or the Target brand with blue polka dots? I'll send them Beagle Mail asap.

lisa said...

Sorry about the foot :( Ahem. Got any rolls left over though? (sorry, nursing hunger :(

Reb. Mary said...

1) OUCH!

2) Wow, either you guys have really developed marital communication into a minimalist art form, or ... :D

3) >>I don't know if it saves any money when you factor in the peripheral expenses<< Thank you for assuaging my conscience on this matter.

$) I'd ask for the caramel roll recipe, but it just sounds too dangerous.

Melrose said...

Id heard husbands like that existed...I'm not sure if I would laugh or cry...but how wonderful to be so wonderful that your husband knows he can utter such a short demand, er request, and know he'll get it...good job woman. :D

Rebekah said...

Would you believe he's the greatest husband ever? :D No joke.

Melrose said...

awwww :D well Id have to disagree with you there, but he can be second to mine ;)

JenniferH said...

Sorry about your foot. As the hobbits would say, "May the hair on your toes grow longer." Perhaps this would do the protective trick, sans caustic chemicals?

lisa said...

Hobbits would like caramel rolls, wouldn't they? :)

Rev. Joel A. Brondos said...

I apologize if this reply is somewhat off topic from the original post.

I stumbled across this website looking to see if I could find the source of a quote which I had heard attributed to Luther preferring women to be "...barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen..."

In my quest (on which I have not yet been successful), I also came across this bit of table talk found in the American Edition of Luther's Works . . . and I hope you won't be offended by my posting it here. Could you imagine this discussion going on around the dinner table at any of your households?

No. 4105: Discussion at Table About Mothers’ Milk, November 14, 1538

"Afterward there was talk about the excellence of mothers’ milk, which is especially good and nourishing. In fact, calves are nourished more by milk than by other food. Infants also become stronger when they are nursed for a long time. Swiss children are said to go to cows as a rule in order to suckle.

"Then there was discussion about breasts, which are an ornament to women if they are well proportioned. Large and flabby breasts cause unhappiness, it was said, because they promise much but produce little. Firm breasts, and even the small ones of tiny women, are fruitful and can provide milk for many children.

"Then it was said that it is not good for a pregnant woman to nurse an infant because the fetus in her uterus always draws away the best stuff, takes the cream and leaves only skimmed milk for the guest outside. Accordingly it is the common judgment of all married women that it is better for the child to be weaned early." (AE 54:320)

Rebekah said...

Father Brondos, that's quite a common topic in these parts, in fact. Nice to have our suspicions affirmed in catholicity. :D

Jenn said...

Great Post! Thanks Pastor Brondos for leading me here! ;)
I'm just wondering (knowing how I cook), if it wouldn't be more helpful to invert the diaper before attaching it since that would be the absorbent side and I'm always dropping fluids on my floor (and yes, sometimes feet).

Side note, I saw the picture before I finished reading and thought you'd stuffed ice in the diaper b/c you couldn't get to the plastic baggies and a towel to ice your foot after dropping a jar on your foot - glad you had a bit of a burn instead of a big old bruise!